Journal of Nanoparticle Research

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 555-567

First online:

Uptake and Sequestration of Naphthalene and 1,2-Dichlorobenzene by C60

  • Xuekun ChengAffiliated withDepartment of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University
  • , Amy T. KanAffiliated withDepartment of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University Email author 
  • , Mason B. TomsonAffiliated withDepartment of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University

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The interactions of common environmental contaminants with C60 have been studied to evaluate the environmental impact of carbon nanomaterials. The adsorption and desorption interaction of the hydrophobic contaminants naphthalene and 1,2-dichlorobenzene with C60 was characterized. Processes that cause the wetting and disaggregating of C60 particles also affect the extent of organic contaminant sorption to C60 aggregates by orders of magnitude. C60 dissolved in organic solvents such as toluene can form stable nanoscale aggregates upon vigorous mixing in water. These nanoscale C60 particles form stable suspensions in water and are referred to as ‘nano-C60’. Desorption of contaminants from stable suspensions of nano-C60 exhibits hysteresis. The experimentally observed adsorption/desorption hysteresis is described by a two-compartment desorption model: first, adsorption to the external surfaces that are in contact with water, and second, adsorption to the internal surfaces within the aggregates.


carbon nanomaterials C60 nano-C60 environmental impact PAH desorption hysteresis colloids water quality